Posts Tagged ‘Wes Craven’


Watch as I review three movies in less time than it takes to eat a doughnut! Have a look as I race against the clock to tell you about the latest high jinks from Johnny Knoxville and company in “Jackass Forever,” the “requel” to “Scream” and the magical mermaid movie “The King’s Daughter.”

Watch the whole thing HERE!






Richard joins host Jim Richards of the NewsTalk 1010 afternoon show The Rush for Booze and Reviews! Today we talk about Johnny Knoxville and company in “Jackass Forever,” the “requel” to “Scream” and the magical mermaid movie “The King’s Daughter.” Then we have a look at how a child actress lent her name to a very popular drink.

Listen to the whole thing HERE!


Richard joins CP24 to have a look at new movies coming to VOD, streaming services and theatres including the Johnny Knoxville and the unnatural acts of “Jackass Forever,” the reboot of “Scream,” the unhappily ever after fairy tale “The King’s Daughter” AND the great punk rock doc “Poly Styrene: I Am a Cliché” and “Clerk” the documentary on the life and career of Kevin Smith.

Watch the whole thing HERE!


Richard joins CTV NewsChannel and anchor Jennifer Burke to have a look at new movies coming to VOD and streaming services, including Johnny Knoxville and the unnatural acts of “Jackass Forever,” the reboot of “Scream,” the unhappily ever after fairy tale “The King’s Daughter” AND the great punk rock doc “Poly Styrene: I Am a Cliché.”

Watch the whole thing HERE!


Richard sits in on the CFRA Ottawa morning show with host Bill Carroll to talk the new movies coming to theatres, VOD and streaming services including Johnny Knoxville and the unnatural acts of “Jackass Forever,” the reboot of “Scream,” the unhappily ever after fairy tale “The King’s Daughter” and the great punk rock doc “Poly Styrene: I Am a Cliché.”

Listen to the whole thing HERE!


Richard joins NewsTalk 1010 host David Cooper on the coast-to-coast-to-coast late night “Showgram” to play the game “Did Richard Crouse like these movies?” This week we talk about the nut-crunching action of “Jackass Forever,” “Scream,” the “requel” to one of the most famous horror franchises of the 1990s and “The King’s Daughter,” a fairy tale with no happy ending for anyone.

Listen to the whole thing HERE!

SCREAM: 3 ½ STARS. “a bloody riff on things that go stab in the night.”

Everything old is new again.

It’s been more than a quarter of a century since the original “Scream,” starring David Arquette, Neve Campbell and Drew Barrymore, reinvented the slasher genre with a scary, funny and self-reverential take on things that go stab in the night.

Three sequels later, there’s a new edition, the inventively titled “Scream.” It’s the fifth film in the series, and they’re not calling it a sequel. It is, God help us, a relaunch, or, as they call it in the movie, a “requel.”

A mix of new and old characters, “Scream” takes place in Woodsboro, California, a sleepy little town whose peace and quiet was interrupted twenty-five years ago by a killer in the now iconic Ghostface mask.

The action in the new film gets underway as a new Ghostface killer sets their sights, and knife, on Tara Carpenter (Jenna Ortega), a teenage senior at Woodsboro High who enjoys “elevated horror.” (MILD SPOILER) Unlike the opening scene characters before her, Tara survives and is tended to by older sister Sam (Melissa Barrera) whose thorny history with Ghostface makes the pair a target for the masked killer.

As Ghostface’s killing spree continues, Sam turns to the old guard, Dewey Riley (David Arquette), television morning show host Gale Weathers (Courteney Cox), and Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell), for help.

“Scream” is much cleverer than the retread title and recycled killer would suggest. It continues the meta commentary on the rules characters in slasher movies must abide by if they expect to survive the knife but, more than that, it plays like a satire of itself. It’s a trickly line to walk but directors Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett stay the course.

As the killer carves notches on his belt, characters talk about “elevated horror,” and toxic fandom until the line between what the characters are talking about and what we’re watching on screen blurs into one bloody riff on postmodern horror and what it really means to be a “requel.” It is simultaneously self-reverential and mocking of the slasher genre, and values its cleverness as much as the kills that provide the scares.

The scary scenes don’t have quite the same atmosphere Wes Craven brought to his “Scream” instalments, but there are moments that linger in the memory. The old trope of revealing the killer behind an opening door is played for laughs and tension, and the loss of one of the “legacy” characters is actually kind of touching.

As expected, the killings are brutal and bloody, and mostly not played for laughs. The new “Scream” is the most gruesome film in the franchise, offering up piercing knives and gallons of pouring plasma. There are plot holes everywhere and the victims have usually done something to out themselves in harm’s way, but the killings are effectively played out.

“Scream” is a slasher movie that bends the rules of slasher movies but, best of all, it also breaks the sequel rule of diminishing returns. Adding a fifth entry to an established franchise, that holds up to the original, may be the movie’s biggest achievement.

HALLOWEEN SPOOKTACULAR DAY 23! THE HILLS HAVE EYES: 3 STARS “not for the easily disturbed”

hillsHorror fans must have an almost permanent feeling of deja vu these days. It seems that the horror films that we grew up with in the 1960s and 70s, like The Amityville Horror, Dawn of the Dead, The Fog and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, are all being re-made, which makes the new releases list in the newspaper occasionally seem like it came from the Twilight Zone.

The latest cult horror film to find a new life in 2006 is The Hills Have Eyes, the 1977 Wes Craven film that gave us the immortal line, “We’re going to be French fries! Human French fries!”

The 2006 version is directed by the French director Alexandre Aja who gave us the deeply unpleasant, but rather effective thriller High Tension last year. For the most part Aja takes his lead from the original film about an unfortunate family of vacationers who get stranded in desert of New Mexico, falling prey to mutant cannibalistic hillbillies. The bad guys are descendents of miners who worked in this remote location and continued to live there even after the government started testing nuclear bombs in their backyard. A generation later they have mutated into some very unpleasant creatures with bad tempers and a taste for human flesh.

Aja’s version takes one major liberty with the source material. In the original Craven established that the mutants, although they were evil, were a family. In fact they mirrored the poor family they were terrorizing—all American verses Americans all messed up by their own country’s experiments. I thought the contrast was one of the strong points of that film and lent a tone of social commentary about nuclear testing to the piece.

Aja forgoes social comment for shocks, and although he takes his time getting to the hard-core action, once the thrills arrive they’re worth the wait. This movie is not for the easily disturbed or the faint of heart, but if you like your scares gruesome and fast paced the Hills Have Eyes is for you.